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Israel: Thousands Protest Benjamin Netanyahu's Decision to Fire Defense Minister


Yoav Gallant became the first member of the government to publicly oppose the advancement of the controversial judicial reform.

Tens of thousands of Israelis took to the streets this Sunday to demonstrate

after the dismissal of Defense Minister

Yoav Gallant, who yesterday became the first member of the Government to publicly oppose the advance of the controversial judicial reform promoted by the prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu.

The demonstrations, which according to local media concentrated several tens of thousands of people, took place in different parts of the country,

mainly in the cities of Tel Aviv and Jerusalem.

In Tel Aviv, thousands of people

blocked traffic on the city's main artery

, carrying Israeli flags and chanting "Democracy, democracy."

In Jerusalem, several hundred protesters broke through one of the security cordons around the prime minister's residence and

clashed with the police.

Thousands of people protested Netanyahu's decision.

Photo Reuters

in various cities

In parallel, groups of protesters also gathered in the cities of Haifa, in the north of the country, and Beer Sheva, in the south.

Unlike the protests against judicial reform that have been taking place for twelve weeks, usually planned in advance and in coordination with the security forces,

the demonstrations this Sunday were spontaneous.

The rejection of Gallant's dismissal by Netanyahu

quickly spread through multiple spheres of Israeli society

, including the unions, which according to local media could announce a major strike tomorrow.

In addition,

the Israeli consul in New York, Asaf Zamir

, announced, shortly after the minister's dismissal, his resignation from his post.

"After today's events, the time has come to join the fight for the future of Israel to ensure that it continues to be a beacon of democracy and freedom in the world," he wrote via his Twitter account. .

The Prime Minister's decision to dismiss the Defense Minister came less than 24 hours after

he publicly urged to interrupt the controversial reform.

"I say it loudly and publicly, for the good of the State of Israel and our children, we must stop this legislative process," Gallant said last night during a televised intervention.

"We need to stop the demonstrations and protests, and

seek dialogue.

Anything that damages the strength of the Army and the security system must be stopped immediately," he added, alluding to the massive popular movement rejecting the reform and the growing number of Army reservists refusing to train and serve in protest of the same measure.

March of opponents of Netanyahu in Tel Aviv.

AP Photo

The controversy

The judicial reform, promoted by Netanyahu and his far-right and ultra-Orthodox coalition partners,

seeks to grant more power to the Executive to the detriment of Justice

, whose independence would be undermined.

Despite criticism from countless quarters and warnings of its impact not only on the separation of powers but also on Israel's economy,

the government continues to push forward with some of the reform pillars

, including a law that would grant control of de facto to the Government on the selection committee of judges.

The Government intends to approve this latest law this week, something that has motivated the organizers of the demonstrations to intensify the protests.

Source: EFE and AFP


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All news articles on 2023-03-26

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